Ahead of this weekend’s big final in Stockholm to decide the champion of Melodifestivalen 2017, escXtra was lucky enough to speak to Benjamin about “Good Lovin'”, Melodifestivalen and his artistry in general.
Benjamin Ingrosso speaks to escXtra ahead of the final of Melodifestivalen 2017
escXtra: Hi Benjamin! Thanks for taking the time to speak to us today.
Benjamin Ingrosso: No problem!
X: Firstly, I’ve done a bit of homework to make sure I don’t ask the same questions that other people have done! I saw that one of your favourite Melodifestivalen songs is Salem Al Fakir’s “Keep on Walking” from 2010. Is there a specific reason why that song resonates with you?
Benjamin: He’s got a great voice that I just love, and with his performance just sat at the piano, I think it’s really cool.
X: We can imagine these last few weeks have been pretty busy for you – what do you enjoy doing after a busy day?
Benjamin: Chill out with my friends, really, that’s what I like to do.
X: You’ve got a very musical family – both immediate and extended. Does that help with getting support and feedback on your music? Do they get any creative input on your work in general?
Benjamin: Sometimes. I think when i get home and have a new song to play them, like a new demo, that’s quite exciting for everyone. It’s nice to be able to play them the new songs first. They don’t really get much creative input but they might say “oh I really like that bit there, you should do more of that”.
X: Is it difficult sometimes with everyone having a musical knowledge that they might say things you don’t like?
Benjamin: Of course, sometimes I ask for the good bits, so that it’s not so difficult for them to say what’s not so good.
X: Do you find it’s quite a challenge with all these big names to compete with in Melodifestivalen?
Benjamin: No, not at all. For me in the final, I will just try to go on stage and have fun. For me that’s the best way to do it.
X: Can we expect any changes to your performance in the final?
Benjamin: At this moment, there’s one thing we will change but I can’t say. For the rest of it, we will see when we get there.
X: Is it a case of that you perform in rehearsal for the first time and go away and look at it to see what needs changing?
Benjamin: Exactly, yeah. And that’s what we will do in Stockholm.
X: Which artists inspire you when you’re making music and performing?
Benjamin: A lot actually, particularly old school artists like Michael Jackson and Hall & Oates and nowadays, Bruno Mars too.
X: You can see in your performance, with it being high energy and very bright that there is a kind of Bruno Mars influence.
Benjamin: Oh thanks! Yeah, and he was inspired by Michael Jackson too.
X: Since the songs were released following the conclusion of semifinal 4, ‘Good Lovin” has been doing tremendously well in the iTunes/Spotify chart. Do you plan on releasing an EP/Album after Melodifestivalen?
Benjamin: Yes, releasing an album is the plan. I’ve got twelve songs already and I’d like to get them out there. You can see from Spotify how popular some of the tracks are and it’s a great platform to be able to put music out there and get people to hear it. It’s definitely a really nice thing to have so many people like the song.
X: Are the songs on the album written by the same songwriters as “Good Lovin'”?
Benjamin: Well, some of them have the same writers but I have written each track on the album so they’re all personal and they’re all me.
X: From your competitors, do you have any favourites?
Benjamin: Actually, I haven’t had much chance to hear them but I really like Boris René’s “Her Kiss”.
X: Was your song written especially for Melodifestivalen or did you decide after recording it, that it would be good for the Contest?
Benjamin: It was written in LA and actually, I wasn’t thinking of Melodifestivalen at all. It was only once we started discussing the possibility that I thought “Good Lovin'” would be a great song to compete with.
X: Was there two or three different songs perhaps that you chose between for Melodifestivalen?
Benjamin: No, because “Good Lovin'” was the most recent track I had written, and you always want to get the most recent song out there, it was the one I thought was perfect for the contest and I’m happy I chose it.
X: What do you think of the ability for Melodifestivalen to launch artists and songs? Was that the aim for you with “Good Lovin'”
Benjamin: Yeah, I think so. You’ve got a chance to perform your song for 3.5m people, that’s a lot. It’s a very good release for your song.
X: Finally, do you have a message for our readers and to your fans?
Benjamin: Thanks to everyone who’s listened to my song, keep listening and I hope you’ll like my other new songs that will soon be coming out! I really appreciate your support.
You can see Benjamin Ingrosso perform “Good Lovin'” in the Final of Melodifestivalen on Saturday night at 20:00 CET on SVT1. Many thanks to TEN Music Group for their assistance with this interview.